Duke University Wilkinson Building

Durham, North Carolina

Award of Merit

CONTRACTOR: Skanska USA Building

OWNER: Duke University

LEAD DESIGN FIRM: Bohlin Cynwinski Jackson


MEP ENGINEER: Affiliated Engineers Inc.

This project provides a new home for the Duke University Pratt School of Engineering’s education, research and entrepreneurship initiatives by bringing together faculty and students from various departments. The 150,000-sq-ft, five-level building expands the engineering programming space by nearly 50% and encompasses 35 research lab modules, a 200-seat auditorium, more than 50 offices and 170 graduate student workstations.

Skanska worked with Bohlin Cywinski Jackson and Duke to evaluate multiple sites during conceptual design, considering such challenges as existing utilities, topography, soil conditions and potential impacts to pedestrian and vehicular traffic. During procurement, after soil borings and rock elevations revealed that the planned basement retaining wall would be too expensive and require too much time to construct, the team switched to a cast-in-place concrete option, which resulted in less rock excavation and lower overall cost. The approach also helped enable the project team to complete work 25 days ahead of schedule.